HAN, ELMGREEN & DRAGSET, 2012

The famous duo formed by the artists Elmgreen & Dragset created a mermaid man named Han. Located in the port of the Danish town Elsinore, opposite the Kronborg Castle -famous for setting Shakespeare’s Hamlet- the sculpture was conceived as a contemporary masculine paraphrase of the Danish national icon, the Little Mermaid, representing a young boy sitting on a rock. The two artists explain: “The sculpture was created using a contemporary material, stainless steel, to create a stark contrast with the original fused bronze siren. Moreover, the reflection of the steel helps to create an almost psychedelic dimension of the work, reflecting in a fractional way all that surrounds it, and continuously changing the images according to the angle from which it is observed“.

“Han” is a work that encourages many complex readings: in addition to the clear references to “The Little Mermaid”, behind the reflecting surface, sculpture not only raises questions of politics, nationality and sex, but with its isolated position at the end of a pier, also tells the story of loneliness in our modern society.

G.F

Han

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